Urban Velo

PDW Speed Metal Grips


Portland Design Works set up shop this year, and among their first products are the Speed Metal Grips. The first thing you’ll notice is the copious use of anodized aluminum. With seven color choices, the Speed Metal’s are squarely in the running for “coolest looking grips, ever.”

Unfortunately, you’ll pay for those good lucks to the tune of $40 per pair. I’m not saying they’re overpriced, it’s just that from a practical standpoint they’re not really all that special. In fact, to me, the shortened rubberized area doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. I go to great lengths to cover my handlebars with cushioned bar tape or soft rubber grips, but these leave my thumb and forefinger clenched around cold hard metal.

Like most lock-on grips, you trade the convenience of secure installation and easy removal for a little more weight and less padding than traditional all-rubber grips. On the bright side, the rubber portion of the grips are replaceable, and PDW is a 1% For the Planet member. If you’re looking for something unique, and you like firm grips, these might be right up your alley.

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  1. bethMay 31, 2009 at 11:16 am

    I have to agree with you assessment. They’re stylish indeed, but not the most useful grips I’ve ever seen. Also anodization is often a fairly polluting process so it’s not my ideal method for adding color to a bike. And the price is just icing on a cake I’ll never sample.

  2. davidJanuary 28, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    yeah i brought a pair, looks really nice but the rubber part should have been a little longer, they feel like im holding a little kids grip

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